Tower of Babble – USA v Delaughter and Wilson v Scruggs

60017055With a little more than a month away from Hinds County Circuit Judge Bobby DeLaughter’s corruption trial, the U.S. attorney’s office is bringing in witnesses imprisoned for their roles in attempting to bribe a different judge…Records from the Bureau of Prisons show Timothy Balducci has been moved from his prison in South Carolina to a transfer facility in Oklahoma…Balducci was the one who tipped off the FBI to the DeLaughter case.

So, Balducci tipped off the FBI a high stakes game of Let’s Make a Deal and the Minor bribe he offered Judge Lackey stays behind door #2!

The obviously clairvoyant Langston pleads guilty, claims he has all the answers, changes the game to Jeopardy and the Tower of Babble begins to build.  Patterson makes three to plea – but he’s no game changer and doesn’t seem to be much of a player – so, he just babbles.

Two P’s in a pod? Not. But, Peters comes next and pays to play.  The game changes to Charades.  Scruggs appears guilty of attempted flattery but pleads to mailing the Court the paperwork required for Langston and Balducci to make an appearance.  The Tower of Babble with Delaughter not and Witness accounts seem to conflict.

Through his lawyers, Scruggs seemed to discount the prosecution’s case in their response to Wilson last week in the civil action: “Wilson assumes that Scruggs corruptly influenced Judge DeLaughter in his rulings. Scruggs has pleaded guilty to attempting to corruptly influence Judge DeLaughter in his rulings, but Wilson has presented nothing to connect this attempt with actual influence or to any such influence with any harm to Wilson.”

What if Ed Peters falls apart on the stand? This question has been bouncing around in my head for awhile now. Absent a smoking gun email, doesn’t the Government’s entire case rest on the word of Ed Peters? After all, neither Scruggs, nor Joey Langston, nor Balducci, nor Patterson can testify to having a conversation with DeLaughter. What if Peters does not? Similar pro-Scruggs sentiments came out early on Tim Balducci (as he was the only one with contact with Lackey – by design, I might add).

Horrors! What if people have to look at the evidence?

I deny the accusations in your letter dated July 27, 1994. You
and Alwyn have cooked up this whole case in a desperate effort to
coerce still more money out of me. Your counter-claim/cross-claim
is a clear and disingenuous attempt to repudiate the agreement
under which you have received largely unearned fees since late
1992. After repudiating the agreement, you now ask me to perform.

Scruggs wrote Luckey and Wilson after they filed suit.  The relationship began a decade earlier according to the Supreme’s decision on Scruggs appeal of the decision Merkel obtained in Coahoma County.

In 1984, Richard F. Scruggs and William Roberts Wilson, Jr. agreed to associate one another in a number of asbestos-related personal injury cases. Accordingly, they formed an intermediary corporation in1985 known as Asbestos Group, P.A. In 1986, Asbestos Group hired Alwyn H. Luckey as a staff attorney.

However, the fee disputes with Scruggs are not about  getting in and, other than this comment from John Keker, much of what is known about reasons for the various fee disputes (or guessed, as the case may be) comes from those who found themselves on the outside looking in at big tobacco.

Fee disputes among plaintiffs’ lawyers aren’t uncommon. Allies of Mr. Scruggs say that for him, such disputes involved a minority of former associates, people who grew greedy once Mr. Scruggs landed blockbuster settlements. “In these situations people want more money,” says Mr. Keker, his lawyer. “Flies come around buzzing and think that their contribution is more than it is.”

In any case, the allegations of shortchanging came following the successful conclusion of cases. Beforehand, while legal success was uncertain, Mr. Scruggs sometimes paid handsomely for aid that could help bring victory.
I’m genuinely surprised by the difficulty Scruggs faces in defending these disputes once they go to court.

The Supremes provided additional background in their ruling on a Jackon County court decision appealed by Scruggs.

In October of 1988, Wilson, Wilson, P.A.,Scruggs, and Scruggs, P.A., gave Luckey 5% of the stock, thereby decreasing Wilson and Wilson, P.A.’s interest to 47.5% and decreasing Scruggs and Scruggs, P.A.’s interest to 47.5%; (3)

In 1990, Luckey acquired an additional 10% of the stock, increasing his interest to 15%. Wilson and Wilson, P.A.’s interest was decreased to 40%, and Scruggs and Scruggs, P.A.’s interest was decreased to 45%; and

The “business relationship . . . existing between Wilson[and Wilson, P.A.] on one hand and Scruggs [and Scruggs, P.A.] and Luckey on the other hand is terminated . . . .”

In 1993, Scruggs fired Luckey. In April of 1994, Luckey hired Merkel & Cocke to represent him in a suit against Scruggs and Wilson. This suit was filed in the Circuit Court of Hinds County.

This next bit of information fills in the time line.

In 1992, they signed an agreement to divide future fees from pending cases.

Luckey’s suit sent off the chain of events that ultimately resulted in Judge DeLaughter’s indictment.  However, the chain is not always easy to follow or understand – nor is the eventual decision  in July 2005, a little over a month before Hurricane Katrina.

On Wednesday Chief Magistrate Judge Jerry Davis awarded Alwyn Luckey of Jackson County more than $13 million to be paid by renowned anti-tobacco litigator Richard “Dickie” Scruggs and associated law firms. The money represents Luckey’s portion of an old and disputed partnership with Scruggs.

Scruggs and the firms – Scruggs PA, Scruggs Millette Lawson Bozemen and Dent PA, and Asbestos Group – also will have to pay attorneys’ fees and some court-approved expenses.

“The court could award punitive damages,” Davis wrote in his decision, “but finds that the award of attorney’s fees and expenses is sufficient.”

Neither side may talk about the settlement; that was one of the ground rules Davis established before the hearing began. Davis also said there would be no appeal, and that any payment for damages would be made in a lump sum.

The case brings to an end a 12-year struggle between Luckey and Scruggs through state and federal courts.

Luckey said Scruggs owed him money from his 25 percent share of Asbestos Group, a firm created in the late 1980s to deal with asbestos medical claims. At the time, that was $800,000 in fees alone. It didn’t count the work or value of the firm.Luckey had contended the Asbestos Group was absorbed by Scruggs into another law firm, and that firm used the money to launch tobacco litigation in Mississippi and Texas.

“Scruggs has received tens of millions of dollars in attorneys fees for his participation in the tobacco litigation enterprise,” Luckey claimed in pleadings to the court, “and its prosecution of claims against tobacco companies in this court.”

Scruggs, on the other hand, argued that Luckey deserved no portion of Asbestos Group. Scruggs fired Luckey in 1993 because, according to Scruggs’ testimony, Luckey had tried to have some dates changed on medical records dealing with asbestos claims, and staffers at Asbestos Group had refused.

Said Davis, “The court finds and notes that the plaintiff does not challenge that Scruggs had adequate grounds to terminate his employment.”

But Luckey wasn’t contesting his firing; instead, he wanted his percentage of the group and the fees he had earned.

Before Luckey’s firing, Scruggs had learned from another attorney that the Asbestos Group might have problems if the partnership signed up clients. So, Scruggs and Wilson signed up the clients and Asbestos Group managed the cases.

In effect, Scruggs argued in pleadings, Luckey had 25 percent of nothing, because Asbestos Group wasn’t bringing in clients. “And even if Luckey were right on his partnership’ analysis,” Scruggs maintained in court documents, “misconduct would terminate rights to future partnership income.

But Davis recognized Luckey as a partner. That meant the question centered on the effect the firing had on the relationship between Scruggs and Luckey, and whether Scruggs owed Luckey the fees after termination. It didn’t have anything to do with why Scruggs fired Luckey.

Scruggs never dissolved Asbestos Group, said Davis, and from the date of termination in June 1993 until the present, Luckey should have received 25 percent.

Instead, the judge said, Asbestos Group was “absorbed by successive professional corporations of Scruggs, which has complicated both the discovery in this case and the computation of the money” owed to Luckey.

In the end, the judge computed it this way: $13,588,907.92 for Luckey, plus the fees. (emphasis added)

The most incredible part of this decision is Judge Davis acknowledges and then ignores Luckey’s undisputed misconduct and rules in his favor.

However, Luckey’s undisputed misconduct appears to have posed no barrier to his success: 

In 1993, Alwyn set up his own practice in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, where he still practices today. Since striking out on his own, Alwyn has been a leading participant in a landmark asbestos case known as Cosey that was tried in 1998 and received a record verdict of $56 Million. Considered to be one to the pioneers in mass tort litigation in both the state of Mississippi and the country, Alwyn represents thousands of asbestos and silica clients. To date, he has been able to recover well over $150 Million on behalf of them.

While impressive, Luckey’s success did not prevent a rebuke from a Texas judge or a related Congressional inquiry.

Wilson’s story, more familiar because of Langston’s related confession and guilty plea, has even more twists and turns.

Luckey split away from Scruggs and sued Scruggs and Wilson, claiming they cheated him out of fees.

Wilson countersued, claiming Scruggs sent him 10 percent from settlements under the separation agreement when he should have sent 40 percent.

Scott Taylor, an attorney working for Scruggs, told Scruggs that as he interpreted the agreement, Scruggs didn’t owe Wilson anything.

In fact, Taylor said, Wilson owed Scruggs. Scruggs then stopped paying Wilson, though he escrowed certain sums.

Seven years into the suit, Wilson sought to amend his counterclaim and seek a share of the tobacco windfall.  He argued that fees Scruggs withheld from him supported tobacco litigation.

Circuit Judge Breland Hilburn denied the claim, ruling that any issue of tobacco fees was not properly before him. Wilson bounced to Texarkana, Texas, and sued in federal court to recover tobacco fees. Back in Jackson Hilburn declared that the issue was before him after all, and he denied Wilson’s claim.

The tactic did not go over well in Texarkana, where U.S. District Judge David Folsom ruled that Scruggs wanted to have his cake and eat it. Folsom declined jurisdiction, however, sending Wilson to federal court in Jackson.

U.S. District Judge Tom Lee of Jackson accepted jurisdiction, concurring in Folsom’s assessment of Hilburn’s “sudden about face.”  In 2002, the Hinds County case rose to the Mississippi Supreme Court, where the Justices struggled for three years to sort it out. They never did sort it out, for in 2005 the feuding lawyers dismissed all appeals. They agreed that Luckey would switch his claim to federal court at Oxford.

That summer, Hurricane Katrina demolished Scruggs’s home.  By then Hilburn had retired and DeLaughter had taken Wilson’s case. Jack Dunbar, representing Scruggs at a hearing before special master Robert Sneed, said DeLaughter’s decision wiped out all of Wilson’s claims except breach of contract.

Sneed stunned Scruggs by recommending that Wilson receive 40 percent of all settlements, including some where Wilson had pleaded for 10 percent.

Scruggs couldn’t challenge the recommendation as a misinterpretation of the contract, for DeLaughter had declared it clear and unambiguous. Only DeLaughter could pull Scruggs out of the trap.

Steve Funderburg, representing Scruggs as a member of Jones’s firm, urged DeLaughter to reject Sneed’s recommendation. “Wilson is getting a better deal than he negotiated,” he wrote in a brief on Jan. 19, 2006.

Langston’s name appeared below Funderburg’s signature. Ten days later, Langston and Balducci entered appearances for Scruggs. DeLaughter rejected Sneed’s recommendation…

Wilson moved to compel production of tax returns.  DeLaughter denied the motion and sanctioned Wilson and Slater, ordering them to pay Scruggs’s lawyers for the time they spent fighting the motion.

Scruggs moved to ban testimony and evidence about the tobacco case pending in federal court, claiming it would confuse jurors.  For Wilson, Charles Merkel answered that if DeLaughter granted the motion he might as well grant summary judgment for Scruggs.

DeLaughter granted the motion.  As trial started on Aug. 21, 2006, Scruggs offered Wilson almost $500,000.  Balducci handed DeLaughter a sealed envelope and said the figures in it would justify the payment.  DeLaughter adopted the contents of the envelope.

Balducci said, “There is no need for us to endure the further proceedings in this court.” He said Wilson could no longer ask for compensatory damages and thus could not claim punitive damages.  Merkel sputtered, “You can’t take someone else’s money, hold it for eleven years and two months and then when the matter is headed for the courthouse, trot in, pay the amount you have owed the entire period of time and say no harm, no foul.”

Langston said Wilson violated the contract by suing Scruggs. “We made payments each time we had an opportunity to become aware of what actually was due,” he said. At that point, Wilson couldn’t win a nickel but Scruggs could try to persuade jurors that Wilson owed him.

DeLaughter told Merkel and Slater he could hold trial for “bragging rights.”  The next day, Langston announced a settlement.

Scruggs would pay Wilson a confidential sum, Langston said, and Wilson would dismiss his state and federal claims.

Let’s think.

The Special Master recommended giving Wilson money he was not entitled to receive and, in some cases, did not request.

Judge Delaughter did not accept this recommendation.

The Government  filed a Motion in Limine to prevent the jury from hearing the issue:

Evidence that all DeLaughter’s rulings were not contrary to law could reasonably be expected to take weeks of trial time. Because it would “convey no useful information,” the government respectfully suggests that such evidence would be both irrelevant and immaterial and should therefore be excluded.

Tell you what – just pick this one.  After all, that’s the one that the jury needs to hear and it can be told in a minute flat.

Let’s think!

After all the money and time expended thus far, what was the purpose other than taking this case to a jury? If it takes a few weeks to hear both sides, it should not matter or, if it does, there should not be time for the Tower of Babble either.

Let’s think!

Case documents will be posted as time permits – and that will not take a couple of weeks either.

15 thoughts on “Tower of Babble – USA v Delaughter and Wilson v Scruggs”

  1. To Nowdy: Thanks for making all of us “think”. But I really can’t form concrete conclusions without ALL of the deposition testimony recently taken in the Eaton case, which will provide a “preview” to the world of what can be expected under oath at the deLaughter trial. Also, the “hammer” which the Government has against deLaughter is his allegedly LYING to the FBI, which is part of the indictment, and which doesn’t necessarily require proof of bribery, or rendering any decisions based on motives other than the appliciation of the law to the facts in the Wilson case. (Remember, even Martha Stewart, that clear and present “danger” to the public, did “hard time” for lying to the FBI). Also, since all of these scum-bags have been around the Mississippi Court and Judicial System for many years, what else might the Government “have” on deLaughter and others, for which no indictments have yet issued. I, frankly, have heard enough about Scruggs, Balducci, Langston, Patterson and deLaughter (I still waiting to hear Peters “sing”, and to see him behind bars). These people are all SCUM-BAGS and belong where they are today (with deLaughter and Peters soon to join them). They corrupted ‘the System” in Mississippi, and the public should be OUTRAGED. Now let’s start focusing on the “as-yet-unreported”, much less indicted, public corruption here in the “cesspool” of New Orleans, Louisiana in the “Victims of KATRINA” litigation, which will make Dicky, Tim, Joey, the two Ed’s and Bobby, look like choir boys in comparison. I promise you.

  2. Ashton my own personal feeling is Delaughter is dirty but we don’t throw people in jail because of mere personal feelings.

    To me the governemnt has some very high hurdles to clear and their actions to date in this case indicate to me they know that. Such actions would include saber rattling in the press for most of last year periodically threatening a RICO prosecution before they indicted him comes to mind first and foremost.

    Their inherent problem of course is their case depends on the word of a cabal of self admitted crooks whose can’t seem to keep their stories straight when deposed along with the word of the man who was paid $1MM to cash in on his freindship with Judge Delaughter, his former boss Ed Peters. I think the general public will be scratching thier heads wondering why the man who was paid the bribe isn’t the one on trial rather than the man that received not one dime nor the judgeship he was reportedly promised.

    Unlike the others Delaughter looks as if he’ll fight this to the bitter end. I agree that lying charge is a bitch, it was that exact charge they railroaded Jim Brown with last decade. Jim of course went on to clear and regain his good name.

    sop

  3. I have no sympathy for all of them “swingin’ in the wind”. They abused their positions and embarrassed the entire Mississippi Bar.

    I found it interesting the current AG and Mike Moore continue to escape scrutiny. If these guys all start singing, there is no telling what might come out.

  4. Sup one of the theories we’ve heard consistently was part of the reason the feds took so long with Delaughter was because they were going hard after Jim Hood. Other than general guilt by association (and being his own worst PR enemy) I’ve yet to see any evidence he’s done anything wrong.

    There are names we see consistently pop up like flies on a cowpie in the cottage industry that suing Dick Scruggs over legal fees became. Jack Dunbar is one, Charlie Merkel another. I personally have a hard time feeling any sympathy for any of them. On the stock boards there is a saying that applies here IMHO: Pigs love mud.

    I only have a casual interest in this criminal case but Nowdy’s post is excellent and conveys as Paul Harvey used to say, the rest of the story.

    sop

    1. Here in an old post is a brief mention of the newly appointed SRHS Trustee Scott Taylor in the context of his advising Dickie Scruggs. As far as I could find it is the only prior mention of Scott Taylor on Slabbed. Who may well be all that John McKay thinks he is. The past association with the Scruggs firm (Scruggs, Millette, Bozeman and Dent) is not exactly a secret, and it was mentioned in the recent Sun Herald coverage of Taylor’s appointment by John McKay.

      Taylor, a Mississippi College Law School graduate in 1992, managed asbestos claims for the law firm Scruggs, Millette, Bozeman and Dent in Pascagoula from 1994-2000. He ran his own practice from 2000-2003. He was previously employed at the John M. Deakle Law Firm in Hattiesburg, and Langston, Frazier & Sweet in Jackson.

      Some Slabbed readers may be surprised to learn that the Scruggs firm was representing Kwajalein Island landowners in treaty negotiations with the US government in 2000.

      Marshall Islanders Want Big Bucks For More Missile Tests
      by Giff Johnson
      Majiro (AFP) February 24, 2000 – Marshall Islanders seeking a vast increase in US payments for using a test range central to Washington’s plans for a national missile defense system have hired a high-profile US law firm to get them a “better deal.”

      Senator Ataji Balos, who represents Kwajalein Atoll home to a major US missile test range, announced Thursday that Kwajalein landowners have hired the law firm of Mississippi-based Richard F. Scruggs.

      Can anyone provide another example of the Scruggs firm representing a foreign government or foreign nationals in treaty negotiations with the US government?

      Balos said in an interview the legal firm had been hired to “get the landowners a better deal” in upcoming negotiations on a treaty between the US and Marshall Islands governments known as Compact of Free Association.

      US State Department officials, however, have repeatedly said the issue of the rent for Kwajalein is not on the table in the negotiations that will address future economic aid to the Marshall Islands.

      Not only was the Scruggs firm involved, so was Scott Taylor.

      “Kwajalein landowners feel they’ve been dealt with unfairly by the US and they’ve hired us to do something about it,” Scott Taylor, a senior attorney in Scruggs firm, said in a telephone interview.

      “Were doing a lot of research to determine exactly what Kwajalein is worth and what the US should be paying.”

      Balos and other landowners believe Scruggs reputation will move their demands forward.

      A later report has additional details:

      MARSHALLS PUT U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE ALBRIGHT ON NOTICE REGARDING KWAJALEIN

      MAJURO, Marshall Islands – (May 12, 2000 – Marshall Islands Journal)—Lawyers for Kwajalein landowners delivered an ultimatum last week to U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright: talk to us within 14 days or we will start actions to remove the United States from the Kwajalein missile range. The Kwajalein demand comes as the Clinton administration and the U.S. Congress are debating funding for theater and national missile defense systems, which are now being field-tested at Kwajalein.

      Scott C. Taylor, who is representing Kwajalein Senators Imata Kabua, Ataji Balos and Sato Maie among other prominent landowners, delivered the ultimatum to Secretary of State Albright on May 1, demanding to talk with State Department negotiator Allen Stayman.

      Both Stayman and the RMI national government have turned a cold shoulder to requests to talk with the Kwajalein landowners, he said.

      Stayman told the lawyers that they should address their concerns to the RMI government. But Taylor said the national government doesn’t own land at Kwajalein and “has no authority to speak or act on behalf of the Kwajalein landowners.”

      Note- RMI above abbreviates Republic of the Marshall Islands.

      It is interesting to note that at this time Jack Abramoff was another lobbyist “representing” both RMI and other clients in the area (including both both Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and separately Guam). Some of the Abramoff activities involving the Republic of the Marshall Islands were described in detail by The Hill.com. The following excerpt includes the name of the President of the RMI, Imata Kabua.

      Jack Abramoff called her the Wicked Witch of the West. “WWW” for short in his e-mails. And he wanted to burn her.

      Joan Plaisted, a career foreign service officer, was ambassador to the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) in 1998, when the island nation hired Abramoff and his firm to battle the United States on a multibillion-dollar aid agreement.

      Over dinner at a hotel overlooking Honolulu’s Waikiki Beach, his new clients dished out gossip on Plaisted. She wore a revealing dress to a Halloween soiree, they told him. She brought a bottle of wine to a party and didn’t share.

      “She’s a disgrace to the United States government,” Abramoff declared, according to an attendee. “And I’m going to do something about it.”

      That started a remarkable lobbying campaign to persuade members of Congress to discredit a U.S. diplomat by way of speeches on the floor of the House of Representatives.

      Foreign service experts said it would have been an unprecedented public attack on a diplomat serving overseas. The campaign was ultimately scuttled when the republic’s president, Imata Kabua, canceled a 1999 visit that was to coincide with the denunciations.

      But the hard charge at Plaisted wasn’t the only way Abramoff’s work for RMI pushed the lobbying envelope.

      The first President of RMI was Amata Kabua who served from 1979 to December 1996, deceased in office. Amata Kabua bequeathed all authority dealing with land matters to his paternal first cousin Iroij Imata Kabua for the Ralik chain (includes Kwajalein.) Succeeded after death by his cousin Imata Kabua who was President from 14 January 1997 to 10 January 2000.

      To summarize, while Amata Kabua was the President of RMI, RMI hired Jack Abramoff to win friends and influence people. Shortly after losing the election Amata Kabua and others hired the Scruggs firm to represent private landowners in treaty negotiations with the US. Various contemporary media reports indicate Scott Taylor was involved.

      More to come on this topic.

      1. Last paragraph should be:

        To summarize, while Imata Kabua was the President of RMI, RMI hired Jack Abramoff to win friends and influence people. Shortly after losing the election Imata Kabua and others hired the Scruggs firm to represent private landowners in treaty negotiations with the US. Various contemporary media reports indicate Scott Taylor was involved.

  5. To SOP: My comment was not a criticism of your excellent post. Sure, a respected man’s life is in the balance. But I will make the following points, while acknowledging and understanding each of your, which were well-taken: (1) Dicky agreed to add two years to his 5-year sentence for attempting to bribe Lackey, by admitting that he attempted to, and did, bribe DeLaughter. Why would Dicky lengthen his prison time by two years if he wasn’t telling the truth about this one? (2) Without doing all of the research all over again, there were some definite “shenannigans” over how the Wilson case wound up before deLaughter: Certainly “more” than a coincidence, if I recall correctly; and (3) The decision issued by deLaughter in the Wilson case said Dicky owed no more than what he had already paid, and (I don’t know what the “proper” term is in Mississippi) ignored/reversed/disagreed with the Special Master’s recommendation. Add to all of this a “hefty dose” of prohibited and unethical (and arguably criminal) ex parte communications about the case with Peters (and probably others), the not coincidential communication between Lott and deLaughter about the “dangling carrot” Federal Judgship, and the charge of lying to the FBI, and I have got to conclude that this case will be pleaded before it ever goes to trial. But if it does go to trial, then there are definite “jury issues”, which I predict will go against deLaughter on one of more Counts of the indictment. I think the man is a SCUM-BAG.

    1. I understand you weren’t criticizing Nowdy’s post Ashton but Scruggs was not present when Ed Peters allegedly cut the dirty deal with Delaughter and there are scenerios I can envision where Scruggs did indeed do exactly the crimes to which he plead but that does not necessarily means Delaughter is guilty of a reciprocal offense since there is a third party involved.

      I want to make clear I’m not saying Delaughter is innocent in fact as I said I tend to think he’s dirty along with some other judges in Hinds County. OTOH the prosecutions case is not a slam dunk either.

      sop

  6. Oops, you got way ahead of me when I had to stop and take phone call.

    Everyone needs to keep thinking – Sop is on the right track.

    However, a lot of people in Jackson believe Delaughter – and feel Peters was a bad influence. You have to understand the context of their relationship to see that it’s possible Delaughter could truthful say he did not lie to the FBI.

    As I understand it, Delaughter worked with Peters until he became Judge or Peters retired – don’t know which came first. In other words, Delaughter “grew up” working for Peters.

    One comment I read elsewhere suggested that Peters had led Langston/whoever to believe there was communication when there was not. Peters is/was in a position to know how Delaughter thought, how he approached a case.

    As I was writing the post, the thought struck me that Delaughter’s real problem may be that he was too clean. In other words, he didn’t “play” and that posed problems for folks other than Scruggs.

    I need to see if you’ve gotten even further ahead in comments so I’ll put this one up and write a follow-up.

  7. Sup, first, the bar embarrassed the bar. At times, in fact, I call them the bar-f. To my knowledge they never responded to complaint Zach mentioned in one of the recorded conversations (how their privileged information was being released to and then by Tollison). The bar-f gave none the benefit of the doubt. It was the most self-righteous, self-serving, holier than thou, totally disgusting display of unequal justice ever.

    The bar-f still hasn’t spoken about the very real issues involved in the Lackey case – and there are many. Instead, they actually honored a man who committed extortion under color of official right…but enough of that for now and on to Ashton.

    You of all people, Ashton, should not be so quick to judge. Not to mention that you’re really smart and can add more than critical comment to the conversation.

    (1) Dicky agreed to add two years to his 5-year sentence for attempting to bribe Lackey, by admitting that he attempted to, and did, bribe DeLaughter.

    His plea was to 1 count of “mail fraud” – and that “fraud” was mailing the Court the paperwork required for Langston/Balducci to make appearance as his counsel.

    I need to get the documents up and will do that shortly.

    Why would Dicky lengthen his prison time by two years if he wasn

  8. To nowdoucit: I’m going to get myself in “trouble”, again: Nowdy: Your love for a former prosecutor, who put the white racist-murderer of Chaney, et al, in Philadelphia, Ms. years ago, is “coloring” your judgment and common sense about this criminal. “Bobby” is going down, either via a plea or an adverse verdict. And we haven’t even begun to talk substantively about what he may have been complicit in, in the Eaton case, and other cases. All we know is what we know now. What else is out there? Do you know ANYONE in a position of authority who had a relationship of the type that “some” aver that deLaughter had with Peters, in order to ‘justify” the relationship? “Let me see, before I sign this Scheduling Order, I’d better check with Ed to see if it’s something he would do!” I repeat: DeLaughter will plead in order to avoid having the book thrown at him at sentencing time, if he were to be found guilty.

  9. Ashton, I don’t know him but I know people who do. However, Peters having the scheduling order certainly doesn’t mean DeLaughter gave it to him, even if Peters made that claim.

    As to other cases…well, it’s all starting to remind me of the time that unknown to my daughter, her baby brother was lining up dates for her.

    Over at Y’all there is a portion of transcript with Balducci talking “at” Sid Backstrom. I recently described Balducci as a door prize – meaning Sid, Zach, whoever tried to avoid his phone calls and office visits. I read the conversation as Balducci fishing and Backstrom with little interest in carrying on conversation.

    My guess would be that he takes the little bit of information he obtained and passed it on in conversation where he claimed to be in “the know”. Here’s the text – h/t Y’all

    Balducci – Um, alright, um, RICHARD lUBE (phonetic), who I think you probably know, former Attorney General in Louisiana, buddy of SCRUGGS …
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – … uh, back from tobacco days and all, he’s joined us of counsel now …
    BackstromMm-hmm.
    Balducci – … and STEVE (Patterson) and he go back a long way too …
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – … but anyway, we’re talking with him the other day about maritime, JONES ACT stuff, uh …
    Backstrom – Who’s he workin’ for now?
    Backstrom. . . not anybody?
    Balducci – … not anybody. He’s kind of, he, he’s lone wolfin’ it right now.
    Backstrom – So it’s like RICHARD lUBE, Attorney at Law?
    Balducci – He’s, he’s been connected in an of counsel role with some firm in Lake Charles, I think …
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – … but he’s dropping that and becoming of counsel to us and just gonna do a deal with us.
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – So urn, but he’s got a awful lot of connections down there, you know, in Louisiana on all these types of things. One thing we, that just kinda we were
    stumbled into, I went to New Orleans this week and urn, I was down there and we had lunch and talked about just a bunch of business opportunity stuff, but one of the things we kinda stumbled into was he has worked previously with his nephew on actually seizing oil tankers that have come into the port of New Orleans and port of Lake Charles ..
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – … from foreign nations.
    Backstrom – Right.
    Balducci – And I thought about, during that time, I thought about ya’ll’s judgement against Venezuela …
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – … That I don’t really know much about other than I think you’ve got a judgement and you need to collect for a whole bunch of money and you need to collect it. And there is in Lake Charles, there is the largest CITGO refinery in the world … is in Lake Charles.
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
    Balducci – And there is, you probably know this, CALSASHUE (phonetic) or CALSACUE (phonetic), uh … CAL, CALCASHUE (phonetic). CALCASHUE uh, LANE or whatever? That goes to it from the port and he says that you know, the government of Venezuela is runnin’ vessels up and down that thing all the time …
    Backstrom – Mm-hmm.

  10. There is every possibility there’s more. Those little things that pissed me off with the court Graves,Green,DeLaughter as well the a-holes at the federal court, least I not mention the court of appeals is that deal which i know gained $ 276 million using our claims then there are those documents in the 5 volumes of court filings that sought $2,billion.

    I can’t understand after the failed trial for the class who are now being paid anyway why the courts has refused us any relief. I hope you good ole boys got the 2,billion I hope it’s been used by everyone as it appears. I hope the feds are milking DeLaughter for helping Green and Graves who have keep awards away from us.

    In 2002 when judge Pickering dismissed our request for relief that he was paid well. I hope Chip wrote about it in his journal and that his old lady is milking his ass. Oh yeah going back from to 1995 to present 2009 $ 2 billion $ 276 million times x bribes . Damn that’ s enough to pay to keep us from the courts till were dead. Oh well may be I can figure out how law applies to the courts actions.

    Let’s see here you have 251-98-1061 $.84 million offer of Vicksburg. Then you have 251-96-493 the failed trial. Then after adding my wife and child you have total of awards on 251-98-1061. The the DeLaughter shuffle on behalf others. Changing the civil action number from [ now keep up ] 251-98-1061 into 251-96-493 by action 251-06-493.

    Some how the claims that have successfully transferred the awards from the settled claims to the failed trial claims and next dismissed our claims. Huh, say what, come again. No one in their right mind would buy any of this and once were free from the states hold on certain family members we’ll be looking into the civil rights problem ingrained by tradition.

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